Eric Nystrom’s first time on NVMC ice

By John Panarese

Eric Nystrom, current Calgary Flame and son of Islanders’ legend, Bobby Nystrom, played on Colosseum ice for the first time in his career. His Flames were in a desperate need of 2 points, as they are chasing the Detroit Redwings for the 8th and final playoff spot in the Western Conference. I really expected to see a Brent Sutter team come out fired up and giving us the kind of trouble the Rangers did the previous night. However, that was not the case.

The islanders trailed after 2 with Trent Hunter scoring his 10th goal of the season in the first period and his first since mid-January. The islanders had a very brief 1-0 lead on Hunter’s goal, but Calgary came back to tie it 50 seconds later and Eric Nystrom, in the second period, scored his 11th goal of the season to give the Flames the 2-1 lead. Nystrom’s goal was briefly reviewed, as the referee lost sight of the puck, but it was obvious on replay that the goal was legit and rightfully counted.

In the third period, however, it was the Islanders who came out playing hard and with desperation. Some 28 seconds into the period, Matt Moulson put in his 27th goal of the season on a rebound to tie the game, and later on, Bruno Gervais scored the go ahead goal on a nice one-timer just a second after an Islander power play had expired. Prior to Bruno’s goal, Kyle Okposo rang a post on a hard, quick shot that had Miikka Kiprusoff beaten

I believe that Marty Biron only faced 21 shots, but he did make some really good saves. All in all, it was a nice rebound effort, and the Islanders are now 9-6-2 against the West. Biron is also 4-0-2 in his last 6 starts as well.

Two observations or comments that I found myself considering from this game, and, again, purely personal opinion based, is that the officials missed some rather blatant calls on the Flames early in the game. Secondly, although I know John Sim is an irritating player who gets under the skins of the opposing team, but I find it a bit obvious and rather disgraceful that the guy can get roughed up and literally shoved to the ice without any calls going against the offending player. This is far from the first time that Simmer has gotten the crappy end of the proverbial hockey stick, and it’s unfortunate that such infractions go uncalled..

In any event, it’s on to Columbus for a Saturday game against the Jackets, and then the final game of the season against the Rangers on Tuesday at NVMC.